COURTS OF PARIS, NAPLES, ETC, 297
a large party, and many of the officers I find here
are old acquaintances. The weather is not dis-
agreeably hot, though last night, at a ball where
the general carried us, I confess I thought a little
of the Black Hole at Calcutta.
I have begun my operations by restoring a
Danish brig-of-war that was lying here.
I behold with some pleasure the vast variety
and novelty of cultivated Nature around me; but
am better pleased with the sight of the extra-
ordinarily beautiful wild flowers and shrubs. This
is a most charming island, with woody mountains
and varied scenery*
February gtk, 1802.
I have been two days at St. Pierre, where
General Keppel entertained us. We had also a
grand dinner at a merchant's house. We went
and came back in canoes, a charming trip along
the coast, which varies every minute. The rain
prevented my riding into the picturesque environs
of St. Pierre, which are more precipitous and
wilder than those of Fort Royal, though more
cultivated. I have experienced no inconvenience
from the climate.